Smoked in cigarettes or pipes, mixed with food and beverages is marijuana, a Schedule one drug. Ever since the early 1900's, the possession or intoxication of marijuana is prohibited in the United States. The popularity of marijuana began in the 1960's. Marijuana's usage declined in the mid 1970's, although its usage has been rising since the mid 1990's. Marinol, a capsule containing THC, was approved by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration in 1985. Marinol helps people with serious medical conditions, such as AIDS and cancer. Some states have passed laws allowing the usage of marijuana for medical purposes. The usage of medical marijuana is illegal in the United States. People in the states who use medical marijuana legally, are still illegal drug offenders in the U.S.
Even though illegal, one out of three American adults admits to smoking marijuana (Hightimes 73). Made from dried leaves and flowering hemp plant tops, marijuana's usage is widespread in the U.S. Grass, weed, pot, Mary Jane, hash, dope and reefer all refer to the drug marijuana. Pot creates a different type of high for every user. A person high from pot experiences a type of dreamy relaxed state, in which the user is more aware of senses. A high created from pot neither affects a person's life nor lasts long, but the numerous uses for marijuana change people's lives and will continue on forever. Marijuana should be legalized.
Admittedly, smoking marijuana long term is unhealthy. Marijuana decreases a person's concentration and short-term memory. A study, researched by The Canadian Medical Association, proved dope lowers IQ scores by an average of 4.1 points (Branswell 2). Stoners face loss of motivation and interest in activities that used to appeal to them, because pot affects emotions. In extreme cases, pot usage before the age of eighteen increases the risk of developing schizophrenia (Choi 1). Possibly marijuana in cases of heavy users, can indirectly lead to death.